A poster asked: what is the difference between being submissive and being taken in hand? The poster also asked: can you be Taken In Hand if you're not submissive? To which the answer from the “Taken In Hand is nothing to do with being submissive” camp might be: “If you're submissive, there would be no need for him to take you in hand, would there?” As one man wrote: “It's really sexy to have a wife who perceives it as a ritualistic battle in which the winner and loser is predesignated—kind of like bull-fighting. What's NO fun is having a super-submissive wife.” Or as another man put it, “Complete obedience means a man has either a mindless zombie, or a totally intimidated mouse for a partner. Unless one is into sadism, where is the pleasure in such a situation?”
Taken In Hand is not about the woman being slavishly obedient or submissive by default, it more likely to be about the man controlling her to the delight of both. Some women might aspire to be more submissive, but a Taken In Hand woman most likely has no such aspiration.
A Taken In Hand woman is perhaps a bit like a beloved and spirited pony who thrives under her owner's control—she loves her owner and wants to please him—but she needs to be bridled and sometimes tethered or she might get a little out of hand. Sometimes she needs to be stroked; sometimes she needs to be cropped. Sometimes she needs to be kept on a tight rein, sometimes only a very loose one; sometimes she needs to run free in the paddock; sometimes she wants the excitement of a ride on the wild side, galloping wherever her owner takes her. And sometimes she needs to be shut in the stable and not allowed out.
To some people, the aforementioned “pony” counts as submissive despite the spiritedness. For others, submission implies a lot more than that—such as bowing and scraping and service and all servile softness all the time—and that idea has little appeal to Taken In Hand women. These people associate submissiveness with being slavishly obedient, docile and devoid of personality—and dominance, with conceited, arrogant, unpleasant men who need to feel the sharp end of Pat's whip (or indeed tongue).
Many Taken In Hand women say that they prefer a man who appreciates the richness and complexity of their whole personality. They want a man who can handle them as they are, rather than one who wants them to be someone else (or indeed a mindless nonentity!) before he will have a relationship with them. (Little tip for men: making obedience a sine qua non of a relationship is likely to lead to disappointment, even if you both agree that obedience is important!)
Taken In Hand inclined men tend to be more relaxed and simply take firm action when the woman gets out of hand. As one such man said, “Whatever happens, I win: either she obeys and I enjoy her submission, or I get out my whip and force her to obey, and I enjoy my control and breaking her resistance.” In fact they both win, because she is just as thrilled by the whole thing as he is.
If that counts as being submissive then there is no difference between that and being taken in hand. If you think that a submissive woman should “lose her ego” (which in this context appears to mean her personality), obey without question, no matter what, and at every turn put herself down and beg her man's forgiveness for the most trivial mistakes (and not because they both find that exciting), then there is a world of difference between being submissive and being taken in hand.